The Pledge by Friedrich DürrenmattThe Pledge by Friedrich Dürrenmatt

The Pledge

byFriedrich Dürrenmatt

Paperback | October 1, 2006

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 160 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


In stock online

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


Set in a small town in Switzerland, The Pledge centers around the murder of a young girl and the detective who promises the victim’s mother he will find the perpetrator. After deciding the wrong man has been arrested for the crime, the detective lays a trap for the real killer—with all the patience of a master fisherman. But cruel turns of plot conspire to make him pay dearly for his pledge. Here Friedrich Dürrenmatt conveys his brilliant ear for dialogue and a devastating sense of timing and suspense. Joel Agee’s skilled translation effectively captures the various voices in the original, as well as its chilling conclusion.

One of Dürrenmatt’s most diabolically imagined and constructed novels, The Pledge was adapted for the screen in 2000 in a film directed by Sean Penn and starring Jack Nicholson.

Friedrich Dürrenmatt (1921–1990) was a prolific Swiss dramatist, novelist, and essayist. His Selected Writings, in three volumes, is also published by the University of Chicago Press. Joel Agee has translated numerous German authors into English. Sven Birkerts is the author of six books, including The Gutenberg Elegies: The Fate of Rea...
Title:The PledgeFormat:PaperbackDimensions:176 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.6 inPublished:October 1, 2006Publisher:University of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0226174379

ISBN - 13:9780226174372

Look for similar items by category:


Rated 4 out of 5 by from Requiem for the Detective Novel It is a captivating and easy read. If you catch the early narrative frame it really sets the tone for the rest of the story and its critique on detective stories.
Date published: 2017-01-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from explains madness, chaos and randomness This book was required reading in my class. At first I did not get the plot at all, the narration was confusing, it was hard to figure out which character was speaking. This book analyzed how a perfectly logical person could go insane when he does not consider the importance of chance and coincidence while they play a major role in reality.
Date published: 2016-12-06

Editorial Reviews

"An unusual and arresting novel of crime and detection. Mr. Dürrenmatt is an accomplished and dramatic storyteller, and he has tucked into his short narrative some tantalizing moral questions."